New immigration poll shows Kentucky voters support Gang of Eight bill and want reform now

06/13/2013 08:32 AM

In the heat of the Senate debate over immigration, a new poll shows Kentucky voters overwhelmingly support key pieces of the legislation put forward by the so-called “Gang of Eight” in the Senate.

Specifically, respondents said they favored reforms if it included a 13-year path to citizenship with a host of requirements for immigrants who are here illegally, as well as tightening border security.

The Republican-leaning form Harper Polling released the results Thursday of a Kentucky state poll conducted June 2-3 for three different organizations across the political spectrum — the Partnership for a New American Economy, the Alliance for Citizenship and Republicans for Immigration Reform.

The survey questions first outlined key concepts being debated as part of the immigration bill.

For instance, when a questions described the bill as a measure to “secure our borders, block employers from hiring undocumented immigrants, and make sure that undocumented immigrants already in the U.S. with no criminal record register for legal status,” 63 percent of voters expressed either that they either strongly or somewhat supported it.

When the details of the legislation were described (in the question shown below), 73 percent of the likely voters polled said they support the bill.

Kentucky voters also seem to want Congress to act on immigration reform now.

When asked how important it is that the U.S. fix its immigration system this year, 88 percent of those polled said it was important to get it done this year with 66 percent of those expressing that it is very important.

And when it comes to what Kentuckians want from their representatives, a large majority said they were more likely to support an elected official who votes for the Gang of Eight legislation.

Kentucky U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell said this week that he is willing to debate the legislation and have it brought to the floor, but expressed concern that the legislation has many flaws.

The Harper poll was conducted from June 2-3 and had 501 respondents. It has a margin of error of 4.38 points.

In April, Pulse Opinion Research conducted a poll of Kentucky voters in April on the topic of immigration.

However, the Pulse poll was based more on the economy and whether or not voters in the state feel that American citizens are competing with undocumented workers for jobs.

Tune into Pure Politics Thursday for an interview about the polling with former Kentucky Secretary of State and director of the Institute of Politics at Harvard University Trey Grayson.


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